A recent article by BBC Future shone a light on existing new technologies expected to become big players in the upcoming years. Some of these technologies are life changers, they will affect the labor force, the way things are done, and may have significant rewards, and/ or consequences.
- Robot Architects
Recent studies have shown a decline in the construction labor industry. One robot that can create a small living space in a matter of hours as opposed days with multiple human workers promises a catch-up in the industry’s human labor shortage.
- LED-Fi (or Li-Fi)
Traditional Wi-Fi is getting an upgrade with researchers finding similar results in rapid-blinking LED lighting. Not only is this technology safer, but it would not interfere in flights – possibly making “airplane mode” a thing of the past. Recently built devices are configuring their systems to allow for this technology once it becomes available.
- Wireless Implants
This growing technology allows for a seamless, painless, and less invasive medical procedure to take place. Pacemakers, brain implants, and other wireless medical implant technologies are incredible – but at what cost?
Because they are wireless – they are susceptible to hacking, rendering a patient vulnerable to the hacker’s demands. Hacking could lead to manipulation of the patient by inducing pain, tremors, behavior-alteration, and even assassination.
- Autonomous Convoys
Well… semi-autonomous. Perhaps in the future truckers will take on a new meaning in which these drivers are stationed in a digital base conducting the truck without the actual labor of driving it. At the moment, these semi-autonomous trucks are proving safer than human driving, reducing congestion and saving fuel.
- Robots Coded to Judge You
Imagine an algorithm created to know the type of person you are based on some interests and behavioral patterns. Artificial intelligence is already in use in several different life applications, but the use of AI is discussed to possibly create bias instances that will determine sentencing and bail decisions in courts. Scientists developing this technology recognize the amount of error this could do, but with appropriate programming, these AI machines will only get smarter over time.
- Fake News Produced by AI
New technologies are now able to program AI to produce human-like reviews on sites like Yelp. This could be a good way for companies to generate multiple good reviews on their products; but also a good way for competitors of such companies to produce negative reviews on competing products. At the end of it all, can the review be trusted if the source is unknown?
- Cyber Attacks Produced by AI
The trend here is the use of AI in our near future. New technologies are making it more difficult for hackers to find the flaws in the system… but these are easy for AI.
- Vehicle Attacks
Imagine your self-parking vehicle not recognizing a stop sign or parking lines and having the vehicle continue to drive. This scary realization can be manipulated by altering real-life images with items as simple as a sticker. Attaching images to a stop sign can confuse the algorithms in vehicles, making the vehicle ignore a stop sign. The same idea goes for self-parking in which an algorithm could be altered to make the vehicle not recognize parking lines.
- Never Home Alone
A modern home complete with an AI assistant. Automatic lighting mirrors, automated showers that memorize preferred shower temperature, self-starting microwaves and self-flushing toilets with a simple command are already in use… just not in one single home – but they will be, sooner than you think.
- Wearable Fitness
This technology already exists, but in the near future the collected data may find its way to your physician who will better understand your vague pain description at your next visit.
- Plastic Barriers to Collect Plastic Pollution
The Ocean Cleanup Foundation recently created a floating barrier to scrape and drag across the Pacific in an effort to collect larger amounts of plastic waste in the ocean – faster!
- Magnetic Chargers
Samsung and a few other tech-driven companies already have this in place. But companies like Apple are finally jumping onboard with magnetic charging technology. Places like McDonald’s, shopping centers, and airports are expected to provide this service in the near future as well.
BBC.com – 12 new tech terms you need to understand the future